CHICAGO, June 6, 2022 /PRNewswire/ — When the COVID-19 pandemic spread throughout the world in March 2020, and North Park University (North Park) students were called home from studying abroad in semester-long programs throughout Greece, UK, Argentina, and the UAE, North Park’s Office of International Affairs redirected its compass towards creating opportunities for students to apply for study abroad scholarships.
Flexibility has become the norm – for both administration and students – pivoting as needed when COVID-19 guidelines tightened and loosened. Students continue to apply to study abroad in Summer and Fall 2022. “One of the Gilman International Scholarship recipients originally applied to study Arabic in the United Arab Emirates but ended up going to Korea because of travel restrictions in the Middle East,” said Tessa Zanoni, North Park Assistant Director, Office of International Affairs.
IIE American Passport Project
Zanoni applied for and received the IIE American Passport Project Grant which awarded 25 passport scholarships to eligible students in 2021-22. Centered around diversity, equity, inclusion, and access, the Passport Grant provides students with that prerequisite for international travel – a passport. The Institute for International Education awarded this inaugural grant to 40 U.S. institutions. Twenty-five North Park freshman or first-year transfer students were selected for the scholarship, and one recipient already plans to use her passport to study abroad this July at Hanyang University in South Korea.
Gilman International Scholarship
To offset travel expenses and costs like quarantining and testing, Zanoni encourages students to apply for scholarships like the U.S. Department of State Gilman International Scholarship Program. These scholarship recipients also have the option to use their funding for virtual study or shorter programs including online Spanish courses through a partner in Cuenca, Ecuador or a virtual Italian Art and Culture course.
In May 2022, five North Park students were awarded a combined total of $22,000 in funding through Gilman. Since 2019, 16 North Park students have been awarded $66,500 in funding from the Gilman Scholarship, boasting a 60% award rate, almost triple the national average acceptance, which hovers around 20%. The next application cycle opens August 2022, and any undergraduate student who receives the Pell grant and plans to study abroad is eligible to apply.
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SOURCE North Park University